When Jules Aknin took his Wassup Dog food cart on the road for the first time in 2013, he sold just 14 dogs. Today, the Frenchman is a regular fixture at Perth events and offers a range of nine hot dogs packed with everything from Dandaragan organic beef sausages to chicken and vegetarian options. He now boasts a permanent cafe to go along with his fleet of mobile carts.
While Aknin is modest about his success, his plans for his newest venture are big and extend beyond hot dogs. In addition to being a permanent home, he wants the café to help promote young local businesses. Despite it being early days for the cafe, he already has a producer’s hand-made granola on the breakfast menu.
“My vision is to promote some young talent, maybe someone who is a DJ, painter or an artist,” says Aknin. “I want them to be part of Wassup Dog and give them a hand to do what I did.”
Wassup’s food cart regulars will notice new additions to the menu, not least the home-made meatballs and salads. Breakfast offerings include the “Breakky Dog”, a beef or vegetarian sausage with fried egg, lettuce, slow cooked vegetables, house garlic mayo and tasty cheese. At the gruntier end of the spectrum, there’s shakshuka with meatballs and the “Wassup Eggs Benedict” featuring a butterflied beef sausage. Both the shakshuka and eggs benedict are served with house chips while traditionalists can play it safe with eggs on toasts and sides. Baristas will serve Crema coffee.
Just as Aknin struck out as a fresh-faced 20 year old from Marseille, he’s planning on expanding the business once his brothers arrive from France.
Wassup Dog opens on Monday June 13.
113 Royal Street, East Perth
(image: Broadsheet / Brittany Garbutt)